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Treatment of a Disease

There are many obesity treatment strategies. What works for you may not be the best method for someone else. In this section, we will help you learn more about obesity treatment so that you can better discuss the issue with a healthcare professional.

Obesity Treatment

A statistic frequently used about obesity treatment is that 95 percent of people who lose weight gain it all back. That statistic, based on a small study from 1959, is no longer valid. Much has changed in the way of obesity treatment since then. Thousands of people have succeeded in losing weight and keeping it off -- an encouraging fact for many that are discouraged by outdated information. There are several different types of effective treatment options to manage weight including: dietary therapy, physical activity, behavior therapy, drug therapy, combined therapy and surgery.

Weight loss of about 10 percent of body weight is proven to benefit health by reducing many obesity-related risk factors. Recommendations for treatment are now focusing on 10 percent weight loss to help patients with long-term maintenance of weight loss. Health professionals including physicians, nutritionists, exercise physiologists, psychologists and bariatric surgeons help persons with overweight and obesity to determine the most appropriate treatment.

This page is intended to give an overview of each treatment option and does not take the place of medical advice from a health professional.

Dietary Therapy

Physical Activity

Behavior Therapy

Drug Therapy

Combined Therapy

  • A combination of a diet (with lower calories) and increased physical activity is reported to produce more weight loss than diet alone or physical activity alone.
  • A combination of behavior therapy and drug therapy could prove to be an effective treatment for obesity.
  • Drug therapy appears to assist in the adherence to dietary therapy (low-fat, low-calorie diet), and may improve maintenance of weight loss.


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